Senior River Operator


Murray-Darling Basin Authority


Canberra, ACT and Mildura, Victoria

Salary etc:

$108,042 - $118,861 p.a. (EL1). Ongoing.



Who are we:

With the enactment of the Water Act 2007 (Cth), the Murray-Darling Basin Authority (MDBA) was established as an independent expertise-based statutory agency.

For the first time in the Basin's history, one Basin-wide institution is responsible for planning the Basin's water resources, with all planning decisions made in the interest of the Basin as a whole.

Our most important work is to:

  • Prepare, implement and review an integrated plan for the sustainable use of the Basin's water resources.
  • Operate the River Murray system and efficiently deliver water to users on behalf of partner governments.
  • Measure, monitor and record the quality and quantity of the Basin's water resources.
  • Support, encourage and conduct research and investigations about the Basin's water resources and dependent ecosystems.
  • Advise the Australian Government Minister for Water Resources on the accreditation of state water resource plans.
  • Provide water rights information to facilitate water trading across the Basin.
  • Engage and educate the Australian community about the Basin's water resources.

At the MDBA, we are committed to diversity and inclusion across our workforce, and in the way that we work. We recognise the importance of making the best use of the unique perspectives, experience, knowledge and skills across our regionalised organisation. We strive to create a workplace where our people flourish in a welcoming and culturally safe environment. We encourage and welcome applications from people with disability, First Nations peoples, LGBTIQ+ people, people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds and mature age people.

Who are we looking for:

The Senior River Operator position is one of three EL1 positions in the team which share responsibility for overseeing the day-to-day and seasonal operation of the River Murray System, as well as driving continual improvement in practices and procedures.

The role also involves substantial liaison, facilitation and negotiation with river stakeholders such as state agencies and environmental water holders on the operationalisation of Basin Plan policy.

In addition to the technical oversight, the position is responsible for managing a small team and supervising river operators and support staff.

The key duties, skills and attributes for this role are:

  • Oversee core operational functions of the team such as:
    • Oversee routine as well as flood and drought operations of the River Murray System.
    • Bulk water sharing between NSW, Victoria and South Australia as per the MDB Agreement via regular accounting and water resource assessment processes.
    • Provide guidance and advice on River Murray System operations planning.
  • Oversee and drive the section's contribution to environmental water management including:
    • Planning, coordination, accounting and facilitating the delivery of environmental water.
    • Negotiating and pioneering new operational practices to meet Basin Plan obligations.
  • Manage a small team comprised of River Operators.
  • Contribute to the improvement of tools, procedures and communication protocols.
  • Exercises judgment, including in high-pressure environments.
  • Influences in order to gain support from a wide range of stakeholders on complex and sensitive issues.

Relocation packages:

Relocation packages are available, and we are committed to a flexible and inclusive workplace that will suit you and your individual needs. Joining us means you will contribute your expertise as part of an agile working environment that offers an attractive salary package, including up to 15.4% superannuation. You will also be eligible to receive a wide range of employee benefits, support for flexible working arrangements and have excellent working conditions. We support the professional development of our people, and the chance to try new things across our variety of capabilities and work locations.


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